Mt. Greylock rises nearly 2,700 feet above the surrounding area of Adams, Massachusetts. The mountain is colorful, and it has a steep slope that shoots up into the sky, unlike most mountains you find in New England.
Greylock is a monadock mountain, not to be confused with Mt. Monadock which stands in Southwestern New Hampshire. A monadock is a rock hill, knob or ridge that rises abruptly from a gentle sloping or level area.
The summit of Mt. Greylock offers views of the Green Mountains to the north, the Catskills to the southwest , and the Adirondacks to the northeast. On a clear day, you may even see the White Mountains of New Hampshire.
Geoff once skied the Thunderbolt Trail. This trail was cleared in 1934 and it spans 1.6 miles down the east side of Greylock for a total of nearly 2,175 vertical feet down. I like Thunderbolt Trail because Thunderbolt was the true given name of my beautiful German Shepherd. Thunder’s predisor was a Doberman named Storm. I like big dogs – I like fierce dogs and both Storm and Thunder fit this description.
Mt. Greylock was first mentioned in print in 1829. It is still unclear exactly how the name was derived. It is thought that the name was a tribute to a Native American Chief. The mountain is part of the 12,500-acre Mt. Greylock State Reservation that was established as the states first wilderness park in 1898. Originally the reservation contained only 400 acres.
Spread across six different towns in northwestern Berkshire County region (Adams, Cheshire, Lanesborough, New Ashford, North Adams and Williamstown) the mountain, its forests, valleys and streams represent a story of man intertwined with the landscape.
Mt. Greylock is unique in the fact that it features prominent landmarks on it’s summit. The Veterans War Memorial was built in 1931-32 and still today a lighted beacon shines in honor of the state’s dead from WWI. The blinking beacon can be seen at night as far as 72 miles away.
Larri, my sister-in-law picked Mt. Greylock as the mountain for the next Parker’s Climb shortly after we finished Mt. Katahdin. She and I share this trait of starting to plan the next adventure in life just as we are finishing the one at hand. Perhaps that is another reason she and I get along so well – we just cannot stand still for too long. Truth be known, she was probably already pondering Mt. Greylock as we came down Kathadin. Not me – that day I was just praying for the end of the Hunt’s Trail. Finally it came!
Now that we have nailed down our Greylock climb date Larri is also suggesting that we venture to Rhode Island a couple of days before climbing Greylock to climb their highest peak. That’s my Larri – always reaching for the highest star and taking me right along with her! I like the idea – if we are going after the highest mountains and one just happens to be in the area, why not!! Practice makes perfect and we are sure not getting practice in our flat state of Fl. I tweaked up the treadmill the other night at the gym to an elevation level of 11, but I just do not think this is how you prepare for mountain climbing.
Sunday at our house was a little more productive than yesterday – I drug Geoffrey out to purchase new herbs to plant my fall crop and Geoff spied a couple of new Royal Palm Trees at the nursery. We always discussed lining half of our drive with Royals and today he picked out two. What started out as a trip to the nursery to buy herbs ended in a slightly larger investment.
I plan to end the day with a walk on the beach. We do not spend enough time on our local beach and sometimes just putting your toes in the sand can serve as a powerful reminder as to why we live here. We long for mountains and woods filled with hardwood trees but we are surrounded by beautiful palm trees and beaches. It is not a bad trade off when you think about it.
Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails, Explore, Dream, Discover.
Let’s do it Larri, Let’s add Rhode Island! Sometimes you just have to go for it! Bring It On! Bring It on!